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This is a question DIY Techno-hacks

Old hard drive platters make wonderfully good drinks coasters - they look dead smart and expensive and you've stopped people reading your old data into the bargain.

Have you taped all your remotes together, peep-show-style? Have you wired your doorbell to the toilet? What enterprising DIY have you done with technology?

Extra points for using sellotape rather than solder.

(, Thu 20 Aug 2009, 12:30)
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Another electric fence story...
After having sold the farm, we moved into town next to a busy street.

My daughter's cat, used to going wherever she liked, would jump the fence and go on walkabout. Worrying that she would get skinny the easy way, I decided to electrify the fence with an old weed burner that I had left over from the farm.

I ran a wire through insulators along the top of the wooden fence and turned it on. I shortly saw said cat out in the road again and had to wonder what had happened. The fence could keep a 1500lb horse in the pasture, but not a damn cat??? Then I realized that when a horse gets zapped it is standing on the ground, thus completing the circuit allowing the zapping to commence. I then ran a ground conductor about 4 inches away from the high conductor in such a way that the cat couldn't avoid making contact with both wires. I then threw the cat out in the yard and waited, and waited, and waited, and then went to work.

When I got home the cat was once again out front, but she looked quite dazed and really wanted back in the house. Upon inspecting my handiworks in the back yard, I found a spot in the wiring that had been stretched out of shape. I figure that she jumped up to the top of the fence, got zapped, got hung up in the wiring, continued to get zapped, and finally made it over the fence.

I tightened up the wires and reset the system for another test. The cat didn't wan to go outside for several days and indeed looked a bit confused for quite some time. When she finally did want to go outside, she stayed well away from the fence. Problem solved!?!? Well it was solved until the 5 feet of snow we received the next winter, but that's another story.
(, Tue 25 Aug 2009, 15:14, Reply)

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